NEWARK – A new video contest is recruiting New Jersey teens to spread the word about the importance of adolescent vaccinations. “Protect Me With 3,” a project of the Partnership for Maternal Child Health of Northern New Jersey and the state Department of Health is designed to promote creativity and expand knowledge of the tetanus, diphtheria, and acellular pertussis (Tdap); meningococcal conjugate; and human papillomavirus (HPV) immunizations among New Jersey pre-teens and teens 11 through 18 years of age.
Participants are asked to submit a 30 second video, informing their peers about the causes, symptoms, treatments and prevention of pertussis, meningococcal disease or HPV and motivating them to seek vaccination against these serious infectious diseases.
“The best time for adolescents to receive vaccines is during an annual health check-up at 11-12 years of age,” said Virginia Witt, MD. “Booster shots may also be necessary to ensure continued protection for teens who received their vaccinations early in life. Part of every annual checkup should be a review of immunization history for both adults and children.”
“We are honored to work alongside the Partnership to empower New Jersey’s youth to take a more active role in their health,” explained Mary E. O’Dowd, M.P.H., commissioner of New Jersey Department of Health. “Our main goal is to provide adolescents and their parents/guardians with the resources to gain a greater understanding of these devastating diseases so they can make more educated decisions about their personal health. With the increase in the number of pertussis cases this year, it is more important than ever for adolescents and their parents/guardians talk to their health care provider to ensure they are in the New Jersey Immunization Information System, our confidential, web-based immunization registry, and that they have received all of the recommended vaccinations.”
Submissions for the Protect Me With 3 video contest are being accepted now through Oct. 29. Each video submission must educate viewers on one of the three diseases and contain 3 to 5 facts provided in the Vaccine PSA toolkit. An internal panel will complete the first round of judging, and the winning entries will be determined by public vote. The grand prize winner will receive an iPad®3 and chance to have their video aired on television. The top two runners-up will receive monetary gifts of $250 and $150.